North Island Adventure, 7 Days
Selected travel dates 9 February 2019 - 20 March 2020
7 day tour departing Auckland.
6 nights accommodation in high end Hostels.
1 night shared cultural experience.
Continental breakfast daily.
Guided tour of every location.
Stunning cliff top walk down to Cathedral Cove, which you might recognize from the Chronicles of Narnia.
Maori Cultural experience in Rotorua.
Traditional Maori Hangi.
Learn the haka and poi with a local tribe.
Service of a passionate Kiwi guide.
Transport by comfortable bus.
Day 1 Auckland to Coromandel. Kia ora (hi) and welcome to Aotearoa (New Zealand) After our welcome breakfast, we hit the road together on our way to the North Island's best-kept secret: the Coromandel Peninsula. The Coromandel is a paradise of beautiful beaches and misty rainforests. Just a couple of hours from Auckland, we hit one of the most stunning drives in the North Island, where the road twists and turns dramatically round the coastline. We take the time to go this way to give you a taste of the more unique areas of the Coromandel that other tours don't go to. The colour of the ocean gets clearer and more pristine before your very eyes, as the landscape gradually changes all around you. Cameras at the ready - the views are magnificent. The Coromandel is home to the famous Hot Water Beach - thousands visit each year to dig their own personal hot tub here. If the tide times allow us to visit today or tomorrow, grab your bucket and spade and get busy We arrive in Whitianga with plenty of time to spare for you to explore the town and sample the sandy beaches.
Day 2 Coromandel to Waitomo. This morning we'll walk together out along the cliffs down to Cathedral Cove (which you might recognize from the Chronicles of Narnia). Beautiful in its own right, with perfect beaches and massive rock arches and columns, it's one of the most popular spots in the Coromandel and for a good reason: It doesn't look real. Alternatively you could take a guided kayak trip to Cathedral Cove to check out this stunning coastline from a different angle. Possibly accompanied by a dolphin or two. Later today we say goodbye to the East Coast and hello to the West as we head for Waitomo, where the glow worms await.
Day 3 Waitomo to Rotorua. Ever been caving in a place with twinkling glowworms on the ceiling? Now's your chance Daredevils can opt to abseil 100 metres into the caverns on an epic 4-hour adventure. Or float along an underground river on a Black Water Rafting trip as the glowworms light your way. If heights or wet feet are not your thing, ask your Haka Guide about the excellent and informative guided walking tours of the caves. Back in daylight, we jump on the bus and make our way to Rotorua, famous for its geothermal activity and Maori culture. For thrills and spills along the way, there's the chance to roll down lush green hills in a giant air-cushioned inflatable ball or mess up your hair with a hair-raising spin on one of New Zealand's fastest jet boats.
Day 4 Rotorua. With a full day to play in Rotorua, there's plenty of time to get amongst it and make the most of Rotorua's diverse activities and attractions. Lord of the Rings fans can channel their inner hobbit with a visit to picturesque Hobbiton - have a ginger beer at the Green Dragon for us. Alternatively you can fly through the lush forest canopy on a zipline tour for a truly epic brush with nature - or even do both. This is your trip, it's entirely up to you. This region is exceptional for its geothermal activity. With neon blue and red lakes, steaming rivers and bubbling mud, the natural wonders here will blow your mind - take an optional trip to Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Park if you'd like to make the most of the sights (and smells) of this unique landscape. This evening is a major tour highlight for many - we are welcomed to a Maori village for an unmissable cultural performance featuring combat demonstrations, beautiful poi dance, and - of course - the breathtaking haka. But you won't just be watching the show. You will also have the privilege of learning a haka or a poi dance from local Maori, a truly special experience. A traditional hangi meal, cooked in an earth oven, rounds off your evening and will fill your puku (belly) to bursting.
Day 5 Rotorua to Taupo. This morning, you have some time to explore the city. Alternatively, if adrenalin's your thing, the highest commercial waterfall drop in the world, on the Kaituna River, is begging to be conquered on an exhilarating rafting trip. It's only a short drive to our next destination, and there's plenty to discover along the route. From mesmerising mud pools to the thundering rapids of the Huka Falls, your Haka Guide will make sure you don't miss a thing. Taupo is a beautiful lakeside town with a stunning mountain backdrop. Lake Taupo is New Zealand's largest lake - believe it or not, it's roughly the same size as Singapore This place is all about the thrills and spills, and there are plenty of options in store this afternoon. Get your hair wet with a water touch bungy jump, or take an unforgettable skydive for amazing lake and mountain views.
Day 6 Taupo. For many, the ultimate adventure on offer here is the hiking (or tramping, as we Kiwis know it). The Tongariro Crossing, is among the top full-day walks in the world. This 19.4 km mountain trek boasts emerald green lakes, venting steam, lava flows and craters. You'll come back grinning from ear to ear before falling into bed and sleeping like a baby. If you'd prefer to relax, jump on a boat for a sailing trip to view Maori rock carvings. Or head to Spa Park and soak until your fingers are wrinkly. However you choose to spend today we guarantee you won't forget it.
Day 7 Taupo to Wellington. It's a big drive today from Taupo to Wellington, but there is some unmissable scenery on offer. Lord of the Rings junkies - charge up those camera batteries, you're in for a treat. Our journey to Wellington takes us through Tongariro National Park via the Rangipo Desert (bet you didn't know New Zealand had one of those). Some of your favourite Lord of the Rings battle scenes were filmed right here, ladies and gentlemen. The Desert Road, as State Highway 1 is known in these parts, gives incredible views of three active volcanic peaks - Mount Tongariro, Mount Ngauruhoe, and Mount Ruapehu. You may know Mount Ngauruhoe as Mt Doom, so be sure to snap that all-important Mordor selfie. We pass through two of the North Island's quirkier towns - as ever, your Haka Guide has a couple of surprises up his sleeve. On arrival in Wellington this afternoon your guide will make sure you get acquainted with a brief orientation tour, including a trip up Mount Victoria for the best views in town. Your tour officially ends in the early evening, but feel free to party on with your new travel buddies for as long as you like - your accommodation tonight is included so you can treat yourself to a lie-in in the morning
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